TMT: foreign firms in Singapore

CMS

CMS' Singapore group is fully integrated with the firms' global TMT practice, and regularly represents start-ups through to multinational corporations across the full spectrum of technology-related matters. The office has also bolstered its offering with the hire of Sheena Jacobs from JurisAsia LLC, who is skilled at advising multi-jurisdictional clients on cyber incidents and data breaches, as well as media and gaming regulatory issues. Sarah Hanson relocated from its UK office, and is also a key figure for high value, cross-border technology, media, and life sciences work. Matt Pollins' practice spans transactional, outsourcing, and regulatory issues in the tech, digital media, and telecoms. Jeremy Tan and Elaina Foo joined Bird & Bird ATMD LLP.

Other key lawyers:

Sarah Hanson

Testimonials

‘The ability to provide one-stop-shop regulatory, privacy, and licensing advice for countries in the Asia Pacific region at competitive pricing. Very responsive and advice is pragmatic and solution-oriented.’

‘The team has deep expertise in intellectual property and technology-related matters, and is able to apply this knowledge to clients’ commercial issues sensibly, efficiently and in a business-minded manner. We appreciated that the team was able to navigate uncharted waters with us, putting in the effort to understand the often complex issues that arise from novel use cases and ensure that our legal rights were protected.’

‘Sheena Jacob is a leader in her field and this is reflected in her adept handling of our matters. She is able to see many sides of the same issue, and confidently gives guidance that is both commercial and strategic.’

Key clients

App Annie

Astellas

BHP

CNBC

Dentsu Aegis Network

Discovery Networks

Finlync

Fitson Singapore Pte Ltd

Gojek

Henry Schein

MGM

Microsoft

Otsuka

SAS Institute

The Walt Disney Company

Whatshalal

United Overseas Bank

Vuulr

Xiaomi

Zuellig Pharma

Work highlights

  • Advising Xiaomi on data protection issues in Singapore.
  • Advised Gojek on its continued expansion into new markets in Southeast Asia.
  • Advised Microsoft on commercial, policy and regulatory matters across the Asia-Pacific region.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

The 'compact and powerful' team at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP is highlighted for its versatility and ability 'to deliver in a range of commercial contexts' with a 'good reach across Southeast Asia'. The firm is preeminent on the region's largest TMT transactions, with practice head Mark Robinson acting for TPG Telecom on the proposed separation of its Singapore mobile business in connection with the proposed $10.8bn merger of TPG Telecom and Vodafone Hutchinson Australia. Other areas of focus include technology and telecoms-related M&A, collaborations and complex tech contracts, and data/cybersecurity, fintech, and e-commerce.  Jamie McLaren lends complementary expertise in venture capital and foreign investment work into the sector, while Tomas Furlong and of counsel Kathryn Thornton are noted for disputes, contracting, and digital infrastructure projects.

Practice head(s):

Mark Robinson

Testimonials

‘Herbert Smith Freehills always stands out for its practical approach and high-quality work product. They have a good reach across Southeast Asia but the central team in Singapore puts in extra effort to optimise the work product that is delivered to the client. They are versatile and able to deliver in a range of commercial contexts. They are also flexible in billing matters.’

‘We appreciate Mark Robinson and Kathryn Thornton for their focus on client service. They pay close attention to a client’s instructions and priorities, and keep those front of mind even as they engage regional partner firms. In this way, they build long-term relationships based on trust and reliability.’

‘Compact and powerful team – excellent team dynamics. Inspires great confidence from Client.’

‘Mark Robinson provides overall leadership to his team. He is great with client engagement. It takes great skills to manage of team of talents and to bring out the best in them.’

‘Tomas Furlong is very sharp, intense, and very engaging. He is deeply interested in his client’

Key clients

Apple

Alibaba

Amazon

Ant Financial

Google

Axiata

TPG Telecom Singapore

Dentsu

Singtel

Facebook

Grab

iflix

Keppel

Mitsui

Standard Chartered Bank

Wirecard

Work highlights

  • Assisted Grab on its proposed joint venture and digital bank consortium with Singtel, having applied for one of the two full digital banking licences in Singapore to be issued by the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
  • Advised fashion e-commerce startup Pomelo on its Series C fundraising round from a group of investors including top Thai retailer Central Group and Skype co-founders.
  • Advised Telio, Vietnam’s first B2B e-commerce platform, on its Series A fundraising led by Tiger Global.

Norton Rose Fulbright

Norton Rose Fulbright's standout team is led by Stella Cramer, who is 'one of the most experienced fintech lawyers' and offers a broad spectrum of transactional and regulatory expertise across various facets of TMT. The team is at the forefront of emerging developments in the industry, specifically blockchain, cryptocurrencies, initial coin offerings and are involved in a number of technological transformation projects. Counsel David Olds frequently works alongside Cramer on the most significant mandates.

Practice head(s):

Stella Cramer

Other key lawyers:

David Olds

Testimonials

‘Norton Rose is a very good fintech/TMT firm. They have a very good partner, who is a notable lawyer in fintech industry, and a very strong team as well.’

‘Stella Cramer is one of the most experienced fintech lawyers and her great leadership gives comfort to the clients. She is able to manage her team very well and deliver the work in a timely manner.’

Key clients

AFIN/IFC/World Bank

DNV GL

Standard Chartered Bank

HSBC

Accenture

AT&T

Work highlights

  • Assisted Asean Financial Innovation Network in the establishment of a ground-breaking technology marketplace and testing sandbox platform hosted in Singapore. This connects FinTech application developers and financial institutions in emerging markets in the ASEAN region and enables the trial of new FinTech applications.

Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance's standalone TMT practice acts for an impressive list of household names such as Mastercard to local and regional tech start-ups on technology-driven M&A deals and data protection compliance. The firm also has notable depth in the technical areas of artificial intelligence, blockchain and cryptocurrency, and cybersecurity. It is also active in disputes involving technology implementations or in the regulatory environment governing payments and cryptocurrencies. Luke Grubb heads the Asia Pacific-wide TMT practice, with a team comprised of Lena Ng, Melissa Ng, and Satbir Walia, who 'work at an impeccable legal quality standard'.

Practice head(s):

Luke Grubb

Other key lawyers:

Melissa Ng; Lena Ng; Satbir Walia

Testimonials

‘Luke’s team works at an impeccable legal quality standard, absolutely reliable, and with a fantastic grasp of what clients need. In addition, they take a proactive and practical approach to supporting the region.’

‘Luke Grubb – in addition to legal skills, in-depth understanding of the commercial implications of complex technology transactions’

‘The key strength of the team is its detailed knowledge of key consumer data protection principles across multiple markets. This is invaluable to a multi-national firm dealing with cloud storage and data transfers across multiple jurisdictions. The team is well-joined up across countries meaning that clients only need to speak to one partner and the entire APAC team is aligned on the task at hand. The expertise of the team in understanding complex data and technology questions and then being able to negotiate effectively with some of the world’s largest tech companies is unparalleled in the region.’

‘We worked primarily with Luke Grubb who was incredibly attentive to our business needs and was able to clearly communicate with our internal stakeholders the key issues on hand. Most importantly, Luke was able to negotiate highly commercially significant concessions from counter-parties through his exceptional knowledge of the relevant legal and regulatory frameworks not just in APAC but globally.’

Key clients

Contour Pte. Ltd

The Bikini Body Training Company Pty Ltd (Sweat)

Galaxy Entertainment

HDR Global Trading Ltd (BitMEX)

Mastercard

Yoma Strategic Holdings

Kai Tak Sports Park Limited

Enova Holdings (Greater China Regional Partner for ABB Formula E Championship)

Work highlights

  • Advising Contour Pte. Ltd., a tech start-up being operated and funded by a consortium of leading global banks and corporates, on the establishment of the ‘Contour’ platform, a blockchain-based trade finance platform that aims to revolutionise the trade finance industry by digitising the creation and transfer of letters of credit and other commonly used financial instruments using blockchain technology developed by R3.
  • Advised on the launch of a revamped set of general terms and conditions governing membership and use of the Sweat platform, as well as the sale of tangible products by Sweat; and the review and updating of the data privacy documentation of the Sweat platform, including the public facing privacy policy / cookie policy as well as the internal facing policies and procedures required under the EU GDPR.
  • AdvisedYoma Group on a cutting edge transaction involving Alipay operator Ant Financial Services Group investing US$73.5 million into Digital Money Myanmar (Wave Money). Wave Money is a joint venture between Telenor Group and the Yoma Group which promotes financial inclusion for the unbanked and underbanked communities in Myanmar.

Linklaters

Linklaters offers wide-ranging TMT expertise cutting across the tech, data, commercial and regulatory space, with particular depth in the healthcare, financial services/fintech, and insurtech sectors. Adrian Fisher specialises in technology transactions and data privacy, and is also spearheading the firms' digitisation strategy in key areas such as artificial intelligence, payments, blockchain, and the internet of things. Niranjan Arasaratnam focuses on commercial transactions and regulatory issues for a varied set of clients across the Asia-Pacific region.

Key clients

Standard Chartered Bank

Experian

Microsoft

Vertex Growth Management

Gojek

Continental

AWAK Technologies Pte Ltd

Dentsu Aegis Network

UBS

Hutchison Asia Telecommunications

Babylon Holdings

Palantir

Work highlights

  • Advised Standard Chartered Bank on the launch of its “Banking as a Service” solution called Nexus – a transformational platformification strategy where the bank collaborates with digital / e-commerce platform to co-create and launch new products and services to consumers.
  • Advised AWAK Technologies on the largest medtech fundraise in Singapore and one of the largest in Southeast Asia.
  • Advised Experian on its investments in CompareAsia Group and Southeast Asian leading super app Grab.

Milbank

At Milbank, Giles Kennedy focuses primarily on tech sector M&A, private equity, financings, and cross-border securities offerings in the Asia-Pacific region. Another key partner, Jacqueline Chan is also highly active in private equity investments and cross-border corporate transactions.

Practice head(s):

Giles Kennedy

Other key lawyers:

Jacqueline Chan 

Key clients

Udenna Corporation

PT. Indosat Tbk

Converge Information and Communications Technology Solutions Inc.

Work highlights

  • Advised Udenna Corporation in the establishment of its joint venture company with China Telecommunications Corporation, Dito Telecommunications, which was selected as the willing bidder in the Philippines of the third telecommunications license – the first full-service telecommunications license released in Asia in around 10 years.
  • Advised PT. Indosat Tbk in connection with the US$450 million sale of 3,100 telecommunications towers to two local tower providers, PT Dayamitra Telekomunikasi (Mitratel) and PT Professional Telekomunikasi Indonesia (Protelindo).
  • Advised Converge Information and Communications Technology Solutions Inc. in connection with a US$250 investment of Warburg Pincus for a minority stake in the company – Warburg Pincus’s first investment in the Philippines in decades.

Morrison & Foerster (Singapore) LLP

Morrison & Foerster (Singapore) LLP's 'exceptional team' 'blend expertise across the globe in a unique Asia package' and are visible in TMT-related M&A  transactions, venture capital investments, and advising on technology-driven innovations in the fintech space. Managing partner Shirin Tang is the leading corporate and commercial partner, supported by Jason Nelms on investment transactions. Jake Robson departed to King & Wood Mallesons.

Practice head(s):

Shirin Tang

Other key lawyers:

Jason Nelms

Testimonials

‘Exceptional team able to blend expertise across the globe in a unique Asia package.’

Key clients

BigPay Pte Ltd.

MUFG

Vectr Ventures

Beam Mobility Holdings Pte. Ltd

Ascendent Capital Partners

Work highlights

  • Acted for three entities within the MUFG group (MUFG Bank, MUFG Innovation Partners, and Krungsri Finnovate) in its US$706m investment into Grab to provide accessible and affordable financial services across Southeast Asia.
  • Advised Beam Mobility Holdings Pte. Ltd., a Singapore-headquartered micro mobility firm that offers shared e-scooters, on its US$26 million Series A financing from Sequoia Capital India, Hana Ventures and other investors.
  • Advised Vectr Ventures Ltd., a Hong Kong-based global early-stage venture capital manager, in the formation of its second flagship venture capital fund focused on technology investments globally.